My blog yesterday focused on my seeming inability to slow down, concentrate, and take time to enjoy some of the more mundane aspects of life. My mind seems to crave constant stimulation and bores easily. I feel that part of my melancholy may be due to the fact that I never take time to enjoy the simple things in life – to enjoy the moment. I want to be able to enjoy the moment again. I am trying to think of ways of learning to do that again.
i have thought about trying meditation in an effort to rid myself of the mental dialogue and traffic that seems to go on in my head the whole time. If I could empty my mind, maybe I could begin to feel more relaxed, and thus able to concentrate more on the here and the now. It’s one possibility at least. But I have to be honest. The concept of meditation looks scary when all my brain wants is stimulation and distraction. I don’t think I am ready for meditation. I don’t think I could sit still, concentrating on meditating for very long. I need to do more research here.
Another option, instead of meditation, may be to exercise some simple physical relaxation techniques. The principle is similar…by relaxing physically I may be able to slow down my mental processes, thus helping my mind clear itself out and allowing me the chance to actually get some pleasure in normal day-to-day activities. I feel much more optimistic about this approach. I particularly like the sound of the breathing relaxation technique. It sounds fairly easy to do, and won’t take much time. And I understand the physics behind it much better. More oxygen in the lungs means more in the blood, which means more in the brain, which means profit for me.
In addition to learning to relax, I think I need to add a little bit of structure to my life, both at work and at home. My life seems pretty unstructured at the moment. I have no real plans to follow on a day-to-day basis. I tend to just do whatever I feel like doing. I never make myself do anything I don’t want to. So my mind is constantly flying from one thing to the next, never really focusing on anything specific. If I had a little more structure and a little more order in my life, perhaps it would help me to concentrate better on what I am doing, and maybe gain a little pleasure from it.
So how to go about this…..??
I decided to make a list of things I want to do and things I need to do, both at home and at work. And I created a rough timetable for each day – morning, afternoon and evening. And I began to fill my timetable up with the little tasks on my list. It is a small little timetable at the minute, but I don’t think it needs to be huge or complex. I just need something to get me started.
For example, on Saturdays, I am going to take one hour to clean my living space. One hour. For that one hour, I am doing nothing else. I am focusing on that. I am going to make myself do it. I am going to concentrate doing it. I might play a little music in the background whilst I am doing it. And I am going to make a conscious effort to slow down and do it right.
On Tuesdays, for a half an hour, I am going to do some light weights, and a little exercise.
On Wednesdays, I am NOT switching on my computer when I go home. Wednesday is NO GAMING night. I can lie in bed, watch TV, read…whatever. But I am staying away from games. One night a week is not much to ask of myself.
Friday nights are party nights. I am going to allow myself to drink as much as I want and game all night if I feel like it. It is my reward to myself for being good.
By breaking my unstructured life into little discreet chunks, I might be able to focus more on what I am doing in those little chunks. It might help me relax my brain because during each little chunk I know what I am supposed to be about.
And finally…….I am going to make a really, REALLY conscious effort to SLOW DOWN.
When I take a meal, I am going to try to make an occasion of it. I am going to try to enjoy it. I am going to try to taste each mouthful. I am not wolfing down my food in a blind attempt to be finished so I can do something else. When I am eating, I AM EATING!
When I take a shower, I am going to try to take the time to enjoy it. No more splash ‘n dashes. I am going to try to feel the water on my skin and back. I am going to try to take time to just stand under the water and allow myself a chance to soak it up. In that moment, I am going to focus on my shower. Not the recent crisis in my love-life. Not the recent scandal in the news. Not my recent DPS performance in Warcraft. When I am in the shower, I am going to focus on it and it alone.
So…breathing….organisation….and focusing on the task-in-hand. That is what I am going to try. Living in the moment, not in yesterday or tomorrow.
Perhaps I sound crazy. I don’t know. I feel a little crazy. But if I dont learn to slow down, and chill out, I really WILL go crazy. Crazy with a capital “C”.